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Auto Transport >> Transport Blog

Monday, July 28, 2008

Online vehicle tracking service

vehicle-tracking-flowA vehicle tracking system, to define in simple terms, is an electronic device installed in a vehicle to enable the owner or any other interested person to track the vehicle's location. Most modern vehicle tracking systems use GPS (Global Positioning system) modules for tracing the exact location of the vehicle. Most of these systems combine a communications component such as cellular or satellite transmitters to communicate the vehicle's location to a remote user. Vehicle shipping information can also be viewed on electronic maps via the Internet on specialized software. The basic function of GPS vehicle tracking system is to provide owners and other users with information about the locations of their vehicles.

By combining the information from GPS with advanced software applications (such as Trimbleglobal-positioning-system and @Road solutions) the owners or other interested persons can see current locations and routes of mobile resources on an online map, find out when a vehicle travels across a defined perimeter, view reports on activities such as number of stops, time at each stop, speed, idling time, routes traveled, miles traveled and trailer door open or close. Wireless technology is embedded in the in-vehicle hardware so that the GPS location and other data are sent via wireless carrier networks to the Trimble or @Road server. Once in the server, the gathered data is immediately processed and delivered to customers in the forms of maps and reports that managers and dispatchers can view on their desktop computer or web browser. The maps, reports and alerts use the processed data to show vehicles' real-time location, speed, time and distance traveled. Managers use this information to create more efficient work processes and routes, leading to reduced operational costs.

Modern day vehicle tracking systems have their origin in the shipping industry. Organizations with large fleets of vehicles understandably needed some sort of system to determine the location of each vehicle at any point in time. Vehicle tracking systems are now widely used even in private vehicles as a theft prevention and retrieval device. The police can follow the signal emitted by the tracking system to locate a stolen vehicle.

radio-frequencyThe GPS satellite system is devised and maintained by government and is available free to civilians. Terrestrial based systems such as LORAN and LoJack tracking units use Radio Frequency (RF) transmitters which will transmit through walls, garages, or buildings. Some vehicle tracking companies ask the user to pay a monthly subscription for a package that includes mapping software, hardware, installation, and tracking service. Other companies offer units that are paid for upon installation and will work for the life of the vehicle. 

Although many types of Vehicle Tracking devices exist, they may be classified as passive and Active passive devices. Once the vehicle returns to a pre-determined point, the device is removed and the data downloaded to a computer for evaluation. Passive systems include auto download type that transfer data through wireless download. Active devices also collect the same information but usually transmit the data in real-time via cellular or satellite networks to a computer or data center for evaluation.
Vehicle tracking systems are commonly used by fleet operators for effective operation such ascar-alarm-device routing, dispatch, on-board information and security. When used as a security system, a Vehicle Tracking System may serve as either an addition to or replacement for a traditional car alarm device. The existence of vehicle tracking device then can be used to reduce the insurance cost, because the loss-risk of the vehicle drops significantly.

posted by All America Auto Transport @ 11:20 PM permanent link  

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